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Michael Block celebrates wild week at Oak Hill

Michael Block celebrates wild week at Oak Hill

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — How did PGA club pro Michael Block, the Cinderella Story of the 105th PGA Championship, celebrate another hard day’s work of shooting even-par 70 at Oak Hill? He hit the town still dressed in his golf gear and had a few pints at the Pittsford Pub with golf fans. (Hey, he doesn’t tee off until 2 p.m. ET today.)

Block, 46, who teaches at Arroyo Trabuco Golf Club in Mission Viejo, California, enters the final round tied for eighth and paired with Rory McIlroy, a day after playing with former U.S. Open champ and world No. 1 Justin Rose.

“I didn’t look at Rosey’s face for the first three holes because I’m a big fan of Rosey and I’ve watched him my whole life, and I knew it could get a little too intimidating, the fact that, holy crap, I’m sitting here playing with Justin Rose, and that might get too big for me, so I literally just kind of looked down, looked at his shoes the first couple holes, and got off to a decent start and went on from there,” Block said after his round.

Only Rose, with 14, has made more birdies this week than Block’s 13. He’s doing things that a club pro, who makes his living tending to the needs of his membership and rarely has time to play let alone practice, shouldn’t be doing and has practically never done before. Block was ahead of world No. 1 and Masters champ Jon Rahm, defending champ Justin Thomas, three-time major winner Jordan Spieth and Patrick Cantlay, his buddy from back home in Southern California who gives him odds when they play. Nevertheless, Block has a chance to become the first PGA club pro to finish in the top 10 at the PGA Championship, and a whole lot more.

“I can compete against these guys, to be honest,” said Block, a 10-time Southern California PGA Player of the Year. “I can compete against them. I can hang. I can post a 3- or 4-under (Sunday).”

Asked how he can stay grounded when he’s become an overnight sensation in the golf world, he said, “Have you met my wife? She will keep you down to earth more than anyone in the world. She’s an Argentinian-Italian fireball that will tell me everything you don’t want to hear, but yeah, she’ll keep me down to earth like you have no idea. It’s pretty easy for me. I grew up in…


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